Darn, I broke my streak of putting up a new post every day! After getting back from working horses and giving lessons, then having to make dinner fairly late, I just simply ran out of steam last night!
We are in the middle of getting ready for our next show coming up in September, along with preparing our presentation and clinic at the upcoming Equine Extravaganza. Numerous horses showcasing nearly every discipline the Arabian breed competes in will be featured, and it's shaping up to be really, really cool! We've got at least five or six horses that are on the schedule, I just can't wait.
Something I wanted to address as we get into what we call "Monsoon Season" around here is working horses and riding in hot, humid conditions. Keeping both yourself and your horse(s) hydrated is a given, a no-brainer. Cool, clean, fresh water for the horses and plenty of ice water for yourself is a must. I will fill water bottles and put them in the freezer for myself and my kids, then we drink as they melt off. Makes them last longer than gulping down loads of cold water, which can cause tummyaches while riding.
In the Summertime, we try to get our riding done from about 6 AM until 10 AM, then start back up after 4 PM until we're done which can last until well after dark. It is a Desert out here, after all! While usually our temps are in the mid-90's to low triple digits (100-105), we do have those occasional days over 105 degrees...but it's usually a dry heat. That sounds like a cliche, I know, but it is very true. During this time of year, however, we get the monsoon humidity and that just makes it miserable for both horses and humans.
How to combat the heat? I usually like to hose off the horses from time to time throughout the day, or have water misters available in their stalls. You can find the misting systems at places like Lowe's and Home Depot, I know Target used to carry them as well. Just remember to keep fly spray on your horses, because hosing will wash it off, and misting even tends to lessen it's effectiveness. Other than that, stop working outside when the temperature starts to rise, and don't ride until after it starts to cool down. We are fortunate here in that we really do usually have a cooling period overnight. With some of the more humid areas it just doesn't cool down, even in the middle of the night.
It was brought to my attention after talking this very subject over with one of my clients that Fugly Horse of the Day did a similar post last week, and in going back to read I found there were some great suggestions, especially in the comments, so I'll just link you here and save some time typing. :) FHOTD "Heat Wave" Post
Hopefully everyone is staying cool even while preparing for your horsey-related Summer activities like shows and trail or endurance rides!